Opponents of the proposal point out that, by abolishing the obligation to mix biofuels with fuels, the Czech Republic would not meet the EU's commitment to use 10 percent of renewable energy in transport by 2020. Fuel suppliers must now mix at least 4.1 percent of the bio-component gasoline and six percent in diesel.
The proponents argued that first generation biofuels are not involved in reducing greenhouse gas emissions. Rather, they are released from used fertilizers and agricultural machinery. In addition, up to 2,500 liters of water per liter of bio-component is required. Growing crops for the production of biocomponents in the form of monocultures, such as oilseed rape, reduces soil diversity. According to the Ministry of Agriculture, reducing the consumption of first generation biofuels would not mean moving away from cultivation and processing of oilseed rape since it would be exported to other EU countries.
That is why Mrs Eva Fialová accused the proponents of the proposal of demagogy. "You play well, but on the wrong track," said Dana Balcarova (Pirates), saying that rape and growing corn are harmful to the soil and contribute to groundwater pollution with pesticides.
Agriculture Minister Marian Jurečka (KDU-CSL) said the proposal would have a negative impact on the sugar industry, as bioethanol is also produced from molasses produced during the processing of sugar beet. He was trying to remedy this in the next discussion of the proposal. Radek Holomčík (Pirates) pointed out that the aim of the project was not to ban biofuels, but to stop the depreciation of agricultural land by cultivating energy. He noted that the proposal was to limit the use of first generation biofuels according to EU plans.
One of the largest rapeseed and methyl ester producers, which is mixed with biodiesel, is Agrofert's Preol. The owner of Agrofert was Prime Minister Andrej Babiš, who transferred Agrofert's shares to the trust fund in 2017 due to a change in the Conflict of Interest Law.
Cars moved by wood chips passed through Prague. Source: Novinky.cz
Discussing the amendment to the protection of the air already attracted attention during the discussion in the government, because the Ministry of Transport changed its initially positive opinion shortly before the Cabinet meeting in view of the positions of other ministries.
To reject the amendment, which was also signed by the ODS, TOP 09, SPD and STAN, 78 of the 152 Members present voted, only one more than necessary. In addition to the representatives of the ANO and CSSD, six of the ten Communists present were also in favor of rejection. On the first attempt, only three of them were rejected.